A retired professor at Pikes Peak Community College (PPCC), Sandy Bailey had full sight until about two years ago. She was diagnosed with a tumor on her pituitary gland and was operated on. Sandy BaileyHer surgeon predicted she would lose all of her sight but she considers herself blessed to have 25% remaining.

As Sandy grieved her sight loss, she sought assistance. With the diminishment of her vision, one of the biggest losses was her ability to read. “My thing has always been if I have personal issues, look for support groups. So when this happened to me, the first thing I thought was ‘I cannot just sit at home. I have got to find something [to help].’” Sandy found The Independence Center and began attending groups. One day at her low vision group she was told that a grant was coming for seniors over sixty years old to buy assistive equipment. She was invited to participate and requested an iPad. Her face lights up when she describes how her iPad has helped make books accessible again. She’s installed NFB Reader, Kindle, BARD Library, and utilizes the voice over function. “I love that iPad. I love it for the reading,” she states.

Sandy still remembers having a blind student in one of the classes she taught at PPCC (before her own sight loss). She recalls being impressed by the young woman’s positivity and artistic expression. “I like positivity,” she declares, “I just have this thing that positive people can do anything that they put their mind to. But if you’re negative, then you’re not going to do it, because you don’t want to. You have to want to do it.” Sandy’s philosophy motivates her to help others. Now she helps teach others what she has learned on the iPad. “I am still teaching,” she says with a smile. The iPad was provided through the Area Agency on Aging grant to The Independence Center’s Older Individuals with Blindness program. ~JT

21st century pie chart

The IC’s 2015 Grants and Soonsorships as of Oct. 1, 2015


  • Sam’s Club granted $1,000 to buy equipment for consumers to improve health.
  • The Myron Stratton Home granted $7,500 for diabetes education for staff and consumers.
  • Corporate Sponsors collectively funded $11,330 and paid for our ADA Celebration.
  • National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) is paying $20,000 for a Spinal Cord Injury Program which includes a peer support group, outreach, equipment, and field trips.
  • Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments (PPACG) awarded $25,000 for equipment to enhance independence and the quality of life for seniors with reduced vision.
  • Daniels Fund awarded $45,000 for equipment to be given to Red Cross Shelters that will enhance the accessibility of emergency disaster shelters.
  • Regional Care Collaborative Organization Region 7 (RCCO 7) awarded two grants. One will test a reporting system by caregivers to see if collected information can prevent hospitalizations; the other grant provides ADA coordination for the RCCO7.

2015 ADA Celebration Sponsors

Central Bancorp Insurance
Network Insurance Services
Cascade Investment Group
Denver Management Advisors
Health South
Mellat, Pressman, Higbie
Kelley Vivian
US Bank
United Healthcare
Meeting the Challenge
The Arc
Yellow Cab
AT&T Relay
RMHC Services